Catherine Russell 
Releases Harlem On My Mind September 9 on Jazz Village

National Tour Kicks Off SEPTEMBER 29 at Dizzy's Club at Jazz at Lincoln Center

photo: Sandrine Lee 

photo: Sandrine Lee 

With her sixth album, Harlem On My Mind, Grammy® Award-winning vocalist Catherine Russell journeys to the blue heart of the great African American songbook. Swinging forth with soulful interpretations, Russell taps the golden age of Harlem, as befits this vibrant daughter of jazz. Vocalists Ethel Waters, Billie Holiday, Etta James, and Dinah Washington provide inspiration where tunesmiths like Benny Carter, Irving Berlin, Andy Razaf and Fats Waller once ruled the roost of a renaissance which continues to reverberate. Of the title track, Russell says, “It’s about not forgetting your roots,” which also serves as her modus operandi for the entire collection. “The album is comprised of songs from artists who played at The Apollo in Harlem, where all African American artists of note appeared.”  

Russell is a native New Yorker, born into musical royalty. Her father, the late Luis Russell, was a legendary pianist/composer/bandleader and Louis Armstrong's long-time musical director. Her mother, Carline Ray, was a pioneering vocalist/guitarist/bassist who performed with International Sweethearts of Rhythm, Mary Lou Williams, and Sy Oliver. Russell notes, “My mother was born and raised in Harlem and my father led one of the leading orchestras in Harlem, which was part of the inspiration for this album.”   

iTunes | Amazon | Spotify

iTunes | Amazon | Spotify

Harlem On My Mind showcases Russell’s honey rich voice in a variety of settings. “I love working with saxophonist/arranger Andy Farber,” says Russell, and here Farber contributes five arrangements for tentet, featuring six horns. Her smaller groups swing equally hard, sometimes with fewer horns and sometimes stripped down to her road tested rhythm section, including musical director/guitarist/banjoist Matt Munisteri, pianist Mark Shane, bassist Tal Ronen, and drummer Mark McLean. Don’t Take Your Love From Me features a special guest appearance by tenor saxophonist Fred Staton, of the Harlem Blues and Jazz Band, who was 100-years-old at the time of the recording session, playing beautifully. Throughout, Russell and her band shine, whether serving up dollops of aural comfort food, or go for the rafters explosion of fun.

Select Upcoming Catherine Russell Appearances 2016

 

July 23: Katonah, NY - Caramoor Jazz Festival (Ladies Sing The Blues)
July 28: Brooklyn, NY - BAM R&B Series at Metrotech (Ladies Sing The Blues)
Aug 6: New Orleans, LA - Satchmo Summerfest
Aug 20: Arcadia, CA - Pasadena Pops Summer Concert Series (Michael Feinstein)
Sept 16: Bogota, COLOMBIA - Bogota Jazz Festival at Teatro Libre
Sept 29: New York, NY - Dizzy’s at Jazz at Lincoln Center (cd release show)
Oct 1: Philadelphia, PA - Annenberg Center for Arts, Zellerbach Hall
Oct 4: Oakland, CA - Yoshi’s
Oct 6-9: Seattle, WA - Jazz Alley
Oct 11: Portland, OR - PDX Jazz Presents at Old Church
Oct 13: Sacramento, CA - Harlow’s
Oct 14: Santa Cruz, CA - Kuumbwa Jazz Center
Oct 20: Boston, MA - Scullers
Oct 22: Princeton, NJ - McCarter Theatre - Berlind
Nov 1: Newark, NJ - NJPAC Prudential Hall
Nov 16-19: St. Louis, MO - Jazz St. Louis

Dec 1-18: Various Cities - Big Band Holidays
(Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis)

Agnes Obel's Citizen of Glass To Be Released October 21, 2016 on Play It Again Sam

Singled out as one of Bob Boilen's favorite artists at SXSW, and the receiver of high praise from director and unabashed fan David Lynch ("She has the most beautiful voice, unique and extraordinary"), Agnes Obel returns with shattering beauty on Citizen of Glass, out October 21, 2016 (Play It Again Sam / [PIAS]).  

The new music is absolutely enchanting, with a touch of a bleak but beautiful sadness and an anticipation of something wonderful just around the next corner.  But make no mistake...as she weaves her ethereal vocals through dense layers of strings and keys, Agnes Obel also shows herself to be fiercely feminine and deeply powerful.

Citizen Of Glass was written, recorded, produced and mixed by Obel at Aventine-Neukolln and BrandNewMusic-Studios in Berlin.  The album will be available as a digital download, CD with lyric booklet, and on 180g black vinyl LP + download code in a gatefold sleeve. The album can be pre-ordered now from agnesobel.com  

“The title comes from the German concept of the gläserner berger, the human or glass citizen,” Obel explained.  “It’s actually a legal term about the level of privacy the individual has in a state, and in health it’s become a term about how much we know about a person’s body or biology or history - if they’re completely made of glass we know everything.  There’s an increasing sense in this world that you have to make yourself a bit of glass. To be willing to open up, use yourself as material, and not just if you’re an artist or a musician.

“I worked with the title from the very beginning to push myself to do new things,” she continues. “I wanted to push myself conceptually from the starting point, to push the glass theme throughout the songs in different ways – in the lyrics, in the instruments - to do things in a very new way. As an album, it feels bigger to me, a lot bigger.”

Established as a major star across Europe, Obel has sold more than a million copies of her first two albums, Philharmonics (2010) and Aventine (2013), and has had over 250 million track streams worldwide.  Here in North America, her songs have been featured on Grey's Anatomy (ABC) and Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family),  The Leftovers (HBO) and Parenthood (NBC). Obel has also received singularly stunning critical praise here in the U.S.:

 

“[She blends] pop melodies with classical precision and an air of elegance bordering on art songs.” 
- Boston Globe

“...absolutely sublime.” - KCRW

“Agnes Obel’s sparse, haunting songs shine brightly…”  - Village Voice

“Stunning…mesmerizing…ethereal soundscapes.”  - WXPN/The Key

“Agnes Obel’s atmospheric chamber pop held an audience spellbound…”  - Seattle Times

“A fully-realized and confident artistic vision from an exciting young voice.”
- WNYC’s “Soundcheck” 

 

Agnes Obel will tour North America in 2017.

 

New Music All-Star Ensemble Signal and Brad Lubman Release New Steve Reich Album

Ensemble Signal will be at Lincoln Center to perform Triple Quartet and WTC 9/11 July 19 and Double Sextet  and Music For 18 Musicians  on July 21. 

Brad Lubman Photo by Stephanie Berger

Called “America’s greatest living composer” by the Village Voice and one “a handful … who can legitimately claim to have altered the direction of musical history” by the Guardian, Steve Reich turns 80 on October 3. harmonia mundi celebrates this anniversary year with a new recording by Ensemble Signal and its  conductor/co-artistic director Brad Lubman, comprising two recent Reich pieces, Double Sextet (2007) and Radio Rewrite (2012).

It follows the ensemble’s first harmonia mundi release, the ecstatically received 2015 recording of Reich’s 1976 masterpiece Music for 18 Musicians, which the New York Times called “sensational” and which Reich himself described as “fast moving, spot on and emotionally charged.” The Boston Globe wrote, “It makes listening to ‘Music for 18 Musicians’ an emotionally compelling experience in a manner that eluded earlier versions.” A 2015 year-end favorite, it landed on Billboard's Crossover Chart and was awarded the French Diapason D'Or. 

Winner of the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for music, Double Sextet is scored for two sextets of flute, clarinet, violin, cello, vibraphone, and piano. “By doubling an entire chamber ensemble,” Reich writes, “one creates the possibility for multiple simultaneous contrapuntal webs of identical instruments.”

Radio Rewrite, for flute, clarinet, violins, viola, cello, electric basses, pianos and vibraphones is inspired by two songs by the British post-rock band Radiohead, “Jigsaw Falling into Place” and “Everything in Its Right Place.” (The composer became aware of the band when he saw Radiohead member Jonny Greenwood perform Reich’s “Electric Counterpoint” at the Sacrum Profanum festival in Kraków, Poland.) “The piece is a mixture of moments where you will hear Radiohead,” says Reich, “but most moments where you won’t.”

Residency and production support provided by EMPAC/ Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, and the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts. Recorded January 24, 2016 (“Radio Rewrite”) and March 11-12, 2011 (“Double Sextet”) in the Concert Hall of EMPAC. Ensemble Signal’s performance was made possible in part by generous support from Joan Margot Smith.

IN CONCERT - 2016/17

7/19 - New York, NY - The Appel Room
Lincoln Center Festival Reich/Reverberation

With JACK Quartet, Brad Lubman conducts: Different Trains 
JACK Quartet (only): Triple Quartet, WTC 9/11  

7/21 - New York, NY - The Appel Room
Lincoln Center Festival Reich/Reverberation

Double Sextet, Music for 18 Musicians

9/15 & 10/15* - New York, NY - Miller Theater
Columbia University
Daniel Variations, You Are (Variations)
*10/25 – Ensemble Signal only

1/29 - Berkeley, CA - Hertz Hall, CAL Performances
All-Reich program to include Runner (US premiere)

[PIAS] Announces US Expansion

 
 

Harmonia Mundi included in RED distribution deal 

Los Angeles office announces new General Manager

 

[PIAS], one of the world’s leading independent music companies, announces expanded operations in the US, including the launch of a Los Angeles base, and a new agreement with RED sales and distribution.

Following the recent acquisition of independent classical, jazz and world music group Harmonia Mundi, [PIAS] now has dedicated offices in New York and Los Angeles.

Matthew Owen has been named as General Manager of the Harmonia Mundi team in Los Angeles with the West Coast office becoming a hub for the company’s Classical and Jazz repertoire.

As part of this new deal the warehouse operation of harmonia mundi in the US will close and sales & distribution will move to RED for the USA and Canada as of May 1st 2016.

Alongside the Harmonia Mundi classical label - one of the most respected brands in classical music - and in-house labels Jazz and World Village, the LA based team will look after a selective roster of partner labels including independent classical labels such as Alia Vox, Channel Classics, Hyperion and Onyx Classics.  They will also continue to develop a growing jazz label roster and continue collaborations with award winning composer Howard Shore’s Howe Records and Ponderosa, the home of Italian pianist and composer Ludovico Einaudi.

Harmonia Mundi USA was launched 30 years ago by René Goiffon and Robina Young. Both will continue to consult for the company providing both A&R and relationship management expertise, with a focus on continuing to develop the company's US artist roster.

Edwin Schröter, Managing Director of [PIAS] said, “The US expansion of [PIAS] including our new West Coast office, a growing label roster and a new team in LA reinforces our commitment to sensibly grow our presence in North America.”

 

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